“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
- Assistant Vice Chancellor, University of Denver
We hired Kathy as a consultant for several months during the time we were conducting a search for a new Associate Vice Chancellor. Kathy stepped in seamlessly to support our fundraising team and reinforce messaging from Advancement leadership. We found Kathy to be a tremendous resource. She has a rare combination of skills and experience that allow her to see things from a broad scope, while also providing specific strategic and tactical tools and guidance. Whether discussing common issues in a large group format or meeting one-on-one to discuss individual donor strategies, Kathy's advice and guidance was enormously valuable. She is an inspiring speaker, a motivating and encouraging coach, and an active, focused listener with an insightful feedback loop. In addition, she has the ability to work well with a variety of people. It was extremely helpful – and fun – to work with Kathy!
- Managing Director of Talent Management, Training & Support, University Advancement, Colorado State University
We partnered with Kathy to launch a coaching pilot at Colorado State University, and the results were incredibly positive. Kathy coached a number of our senior leaders to help them identify and achieve their developmental goals. In addition, she communicated with their supervisors, co-designed joint outcomes/goals that served the division, and kept everyone updated about their progress. We were so pleased with the results that we plan to continue working with Kathy and formalize our coaching program. As the lead for our talent management initiatives, I have struggled to find developmental opportunities for our high-achieving staff, especially those who are near the top of the organizational chart. Kathy’s expertise and breadth of experience in Advancement make her a perfect fit. She’s also very adept at working with supervisors with differing styles. For example, one of our supervisors was more hands off, while the other wanted more involvement. Kathy was able to adjust as needed to meet everyone’s expectations. The feedback from staff who were coached by Kathy was 100% positive. They felt challenged and supported, appreciated her advice, and found her to be relatable. She helped them take a global view on their challenges, and she provided a confidential and safe sounding board. Coaching is the new frontier in talent management, especially in higher education, and I cannot think of another person better suited to lead the way than Kathy Drucquer Duff.
- Senior Prospect Management Analyst & Megan Simpson Gift and Records Specialist, California Institute of Technology
"We actually didn't have any idea the level of strategic planning that could be employed for salon events. [Kathy's Academic Impressions webinar] was a thoughtful presentation on creating these events from start to finish - and beyond. Thank you Kathy!"
- Director of Advancement Events, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
"We have been talking about developing an event strategy for years - yet never knew exactly where to start. [Kathy's Academic Impressions webinar] not only provided us with great information but also with resources to help us get started."
- Chief of Staff and Vice President for Communications and External Relations, Mills College
Kathy Drucquer Duff has been an exceptional colleague, has extensive experience and skill in fundraising strategy and donor solicitation, and is very adept as a search consultant, identifying talent and mentoring staff. She works with a high level of confidentiality and is very analytical and discrete in her approach. Her administration of a search at the vice presidential level yielded top notch candidates, all highly experienced. This was the most professionally administered search I have experienced in my several decades as a senior administrator in higher ed. It has been a pleasure working with her and I offer her the highest recommendation.
- Senior Advancement Director, Mills College
I had the pleasure of working with Kathy when she served as a consultant to the Office of Institutional Advancement at Mills College. Kathy was a powerhouse member of our team who used her in-depth knowledge and expertise to serve as a leader, coach, and mentor who inspired us in so many ways. She quickly was able to identify individual talent and understood how to empower the team, motivating us with supportive enthusiasm. She demonstrated the unique skill of balancing competing priorities and managing expectations. Kathy definitely made a positive impact on our team. Colleagues described her as strong, determined, having boundless energy, thoughtful, kindhearted, hardworking, nurturing, tenacious, protective, compassionate, genuine, optimistic, amazing, dedicated, and supportive. Full of energy, she always did what she said she would do regardless of the time of day or night. With her can do attitude, professional fundraising experience, leadership skills, and strategic approach to challenging circumstances, Kathy Drucquer Duff would be a true asset to any organization.
- Chief Philanthropy Officer, City of Hope
As the new Chief Philanthropy Officer for City of Hope, I needed to bring in a professional who I had complete confidence in and someone I knew could hit the ground running while being sensitive to both my newness to the organization and an unfamiliarity to the culture. Kathy offers any organization, especially to the senior management executives, the ultimate package in terms of professionalism, enthusiasm, current knowledge of the industry, and commitment to one’s program. She is a seasoned leader who knows when to push people out of their comfort zone and when to allow assimilation. In the end, she is a genuine partner to your program whose hard work results in raising the level of individual and team performance and productivity. She has my highest level of appreciation and endorsement.
- Senior Vice President & Chief Development Officer, San Diego Humane Society
In my 20+ years of experience as a fundraising professional, Kathy stands alone in her ability to maximize the effectiveness of her team and to unite others around a common objective. I have worked for and with Kathy for more than a decade. In that time, I have directly witnessed her skill as a manager, mentor, strategist, coach and leader. She is a master communicator who can distill complex concepts into easily understood objectives. Whether in an individual meeting or presenting to large groups, Kathy has a unique ability to connect with her audience, identify their needs, and provide valuable insights on how to improve their individual and team performance. Kathy has taught me the importance of establishing a culture that embraces accountability, creativity and a shared vision. Her credibility in crafting this culture is born from her tireless work ethic, passion for fundraising and commitment to help every employee/client achieve their goals. Whether it is help with developing a fundraising strategy, charting a course for a comprehensive campaign or coaching individuals to be their best, Kathy has a rich history of success that few can equal.
- Senior Conference Director, Academic Impressions
I continue to hire Kathy to teach webinars and conferences on strategic fundraising talent management and fundraising skills because of the experience and credibility she brings to the conversation. She has extensive experience across the higher education and healthcare sectors that inform her thinking, and she relays that experience into digestible information she shares with our audience. She is intentional about putting time and effort into growing her own team, and breaks advancement management down in a way that doesn’t seem intimidating to other managers. She helps our audience understand that intentionally managing your team is equally important to the fundraising component of their job. Kathy is also one of our highest rated speakers; conference attendees rave about her.
- Gift Planning Officer, American National Red Cross
I hired Kathy to present seminars and webcasts when I was with Academic Impressions. She was internally driven to develop consistently strong products that provided information and knowledge not available to the existing fundraising marketplace. Kathy made it a point to give her best and, more importantly, truly valued feedback from her colleagues/participants to improve her future work; I can say with confidence she always seeks to improve her results. That said, what really shines through is the breadth of Kathy’s experience – it’s rare to find someone as adept across both channels (annual giving to major giving to executive management) and market segments (education to health care) – and it’s that breadth that allows her to advise so well.
- President and CEO, The New England Aquarium
Kathy has terrific skills as a consultant in a field where there are few effective development consultants. Not only is she skilled in philanthropy and fundraising, but also in managing people and structuring teams. She is an extremely good judge of professional situations and is able to determine individuals’ strengths and weaknesses, which allows her to build very effective teams. Any organization would be lucky to have Kathy as a consultant.